Posted by Anjali Kaur on Jul 17, 2021

Power Sharing

Power-sharing is a part of political science, Class 10, CBSE. In this blog post, you will find the textbook questions with answers and some extra questions for practice.

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Also, start making notes and revise them over and over again!

Difficult Words with Meaning

  1. Minority: A relatively small group of people differing from the majority in race, religion, etc.
  2. Majority: The greater number
  3. Messy: Difficult to deal with
  4. Dominance: Power and influence over others
  5. Stipulated: Demand or specify
  6. Foster: Encourage the development of (something)
  7. Alienation: experiencing the feelings of isolation
  8. Strained: Not relaxed
  9. Autonomy: Self-government (freedom to act or function independently)
  10. Innovative: New ideas or things
  11. Unilaterally: Done by one side only (binding or affecting one party only)
  12. Strife: Conflict
  13. Undermine: Work against, to weaken
  14. Tyranny: A state under cruel and oppressive government (ruling without regard to the wishes of people)
  15. Ruin: A physical destruction
  16. Legitimate: Conforming to the laws or rules
  17. Prudence: Carefulness (line of conduct)
  18. Dispersed: Move apart and go in a different direction
  19. Contenders: Struggle to achieve
  20. Coalition: Government made up of two political parties who have agreed to work together

1. What are the different forms of power-sharing in modern democracies?

Ans. In modern democracies, power-sharing arrangements have taken different forms:

  1. Horizontal division of power:
    1. Power is shared among different organs of government, such as the legislature, executive, and judiciary.
    2. This ensures that none of the organs can exercise unlimited power.
    3. Each organ checks the others and thus balance of power among various institutions is maintained.
    4. This arrangement is also called a system of checks and balances.
  1. Vertical division of power:
    1. Power can be shared among governments at different levels.
    2. A general government for the entire country is called the Central or Union Government.
    3. A government at the state level is called State Government.
    4. A government at the levels lower to the state level is called the Municipalities and Panchayats.
    5. This is also called the federal division of power.

Municipalities / Panchayats

  1. Division of power among social groups:
    1. The countries with a community government share the power among different social groups, such as the religious and linguistic groups.
    2. We can best cite the example of Belgium in this regard.
    3. This method is used to give minority communities a fair share of power.
  2. Division of power among political parties, pressure groups, and movements:
    1. Political parties, pressure groups, and movements help in controlling or influencing those who are in power.
    2. In a democracy, citizens have the freedom to choose among the various contenders of power.
    3. Such freedom of choice entails competition among the different parties.
    4. Such competition ensures that power does not remain on one hand, but is shared among different political parties representing different ideologies and social groups.

2. State one prudential and one moral reason for power-sharing with an example from the Indian context.


Prudential ReasonsMoral Reasons
1. Prudential reasons are based on careful calculation of gains and losses.1. Moral reasons are purely based on moral considerations.
2. The prudential reason for power sharing is good because it reduces the possibility of conflict among social groups.2. The moral reason for power-sharing is the very spirit of democracy. Here, people have the right to be consulted on how they are to be governed.
3. For example Reserved constituencies for women and minorities in the Parliament and State Government.3. For example Division of power among different units in India.

3. What is the population of Belgium? Describe the ethnic composition of this country.


  1. The population of Belgium is a little over one crore.
  2. The ethnic composition of this small country is very complex.
  3. Of the country’s total population, 59 % live in the Flemish region and speaks the Dutch language.
  4. Another 40% of people live in the Wallonia region and speak French.
  5. The remaining 1% of the Belgians speak German.
  6. In the capital city Brussels, 80% of people speak French while 20% are Dutch-speaking.

4. What were the majoritarian measures taken in Sri Lanka to establish Sinhala supremacy?

Answer. When Sri Lanka emerged as an independent country in 1948, the leaders of the Sinhala community tried to dominate the government by the virtue of their majority. To establish their supremacy, they took some ‘majoritarian measures’ which are given below.

  1. In 1956, an Act was passed which declared Sinhala as the only official language.
  2. Preferences were given to Sinhala applicants for university positions and government jobs.
  3. A new constitution stipulated that the state shall protect and promote Buddhism.

All these government measures, coming one after the other, gradually stained the relationship between the two communities.

5. What were the consequences of the majoritarian measures adopted to establish Sinhala dominance over the government?


These measures created a feeling of alienation among Sri Lankan Tamils. They felt that the constitution and government policies denied them equal political rights and opportunities. They also felt that their language and culture were not given due importance. To fight for their rights the Sri Lankan Tamils launched parties and Struggles and demanded:

  1. Recognition of Tamil as an official language.
  2. Regional autonomy and equality of opportunity in securing education and jobs.
  3. By the 1980s several political organizations were formed demanding an independent Tamil state in northern and eastern parts of Sri Lanka. But all these demands were denied and the distrust developed turned into a civil war.

6. What was its impact on the civil war in Sri Lanka?

Answer. Impact of the civil war:

  1. Thousands of people of both communities were killed.
  2. Many families were forced to leave the country as refugees and many more lost their livelihoods.
  3. It caused a terrible setback to the social, cultural, and economic lives of the country.

7. What arrangements were worked out by the Belgium leaders to accommodate regional differences and cultural diversities?

Answer. The Belgium leaders recognized the existence of regional differences and cultural diversities. Between 1970 and 1993, they amended their constitution four times to accommodate.

  1. The number of Dutch and French-speaking ministers is equal in the central government.
  2. Many powers of the central government have been given to state governments of the country’s two regions. The state governments are not subordinate to the central government.
  3. Brussels has a separate government in which both the communities have equal representation.
  4. The third kind of government named community government is introduced in addition to the central and state governments. This government has the power regarding cultural, educational, and language-related issues.

Download the PDF of the above content here:

“Content Credit: Ms. Mandeep Kaur – HOD Social Studies, Shishu Niketan Public School, Mohali.”

Feel free to join my Facebook group made for Social Studies and you can also subscribe to my website to receive a monthly mail on all the collated posts. Also, subscribe to my YouTube channel to get video explanations of the topics.

Take a look at the previous blog posts on resources and development.

  1. Resources and Development (Part-1)
  2. Resources and Development (Part-2)
  3. Resources and Development (Part-3)
  4. Resources and Development (Part-4)
  5. Resources and Development (Part-5)

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